It has been a long seven and a half years for Hoylman. That’s how long it has been since the state Senate took any action on LGBT legislation. After same-sex marriage passed in 2011, progress became mostly stagnant. But not anymore. The state Senate voted to pass the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act, or GENDA, establishing new protections for transgender New Yorkers, as well as a bill banning conversion therapy. Hoylman, the only openly gay state senator and sponsor of the legislation, has been fighting for this and other LGBT legislation for years. “Jesus Christ, further?” GOP Sen. Fred Akshar muttered. Yes please, Hoylman likely thought.
Hoylman edges AOC for winner of the week
Hoylman edges AOC for winner of the week
Update: State Sen. Brad Hoylman was voted the top winner, thanks to the long-delayed passage of GENDA, edging out Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez 45-34 percent. (A few write-in votes also came in for President Donald Trump - as a winner - as he's in a standoff with House Democrats over the partial government shutdown.) On the losers list, Rep. Kathleen Rice was the runaway loser, garnering with nearly half of the votes cast, as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi got revenge against the Long Island congresswoman for opposing her speakership candidacy.
A struggling subway system, disappearing mom & pop shops, and you STILL can’t get a ticket to Hamilton – but nothing can stop the rabbit-like multiplication of tourists in the five boroughs. An all-time record 65 million visited last year. Enjoy it while it lasts. New Jersey resident Whoopi Goldberg’s bike-lane fearmongering to The View’s national audience is sure to scare off visitors. Read on to see who deserves a vacation – and who needs one.
It wasn’t so long ago that sexual harassment allegations would be swept under the rug in Albany. Today there’s still room for improvement, but at least lawmakers are listening to survivors – and taking them seriously. This week, the state Legislature scheduled a hearing on sexual harassment in the workplace, a key request of a group of former staffers who have accused lawmakers of misconduct. State Sen. Liz Krueger, who has long championed such efforts, may now find it easier to pass further legislation addressing the state Capitol’s #MeToo problems.
We might get another New Yorker v. New Yorker presidential race, with U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand launching her candidacy from the hottest hamlet on the Hudson, the Home of Uncle Sam, Troy, New York. The city’s Democratic mayor will certainly appreciate the way visiting reporters will boost Troy’s bars and coffee shops. And the city could use some journalists, after its paper of record lost its office space.
Mitch McConnell has gone into hiding, cartoonishly ducking freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as she and three other representatives sought to confront the Senate leader about his refusal to consider House bills to reopen the government. Also this week, the Twitter-savvy democratic socialist landed a seat on the House Financial Services Committee, where she’ll set her sights on big banks in hopes of sending Wall Street running for cover as well. In the meantime, she’s got a new side hustle: teaching her tech-challenged Dem colleagues how to dunk on Twitter.
It’s not every day that the governor gives your city an alliterative capital project, but for Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh, that’s exactly what Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s 2020 budget proposal has in store. Cuomo announced the “Syracuse Surge” this week, an economic development initiative that aims to build up the region’s tech credentials by expanding secondary and post-secondary education in science, tech and engineering, as well as reinvigorating a local startup incubator. Here’s hoping this surge has a little more juice than the “Buffalo Billion.”
Real estate is remarkably influential in New York, and at least some of the industry’s political clout comes from a campaign finance loophole involving limited liability companies. In short, firms can use multiple LLCs to funnel massive amounts of cash to elected officials – while making it difficult to tell who’s actually giving the money. But it appears to be the end of an era, as Democratic lawmakers voted to close the LLC loophole, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo is on board. And with Big Real Estate losing a powerful tool, groups like John Banks’ REBNY may have a harder time pushing back during this year’s renewal of rent regulations.
He got off scot-free for a year, but now his dirty laundry is being aired. Turns out that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s former acting chief of staff was forced out after sexual harassment allegations were made against him. O’Brien lost his job, yes, but did so quietly and got a job at Hilltop Public Solutions, a consulting firm full of former de Blasio staffers. Although he doesn’t have that job anymore, having been fired with news of the allegations made against him. If only that pesky New York Times reporter didn’t do his job, O’Brien might still have his.
Life is tough when you are the leader of a failed insurrection, and no one knows that better in Congress now than Rep. Kathleen Rice. The Long Island Democrat tried to deny Rep. Nancy Pelosi a second stint as speaker of the House. Now word on the street is that Pelosi denied Rice a spot on the House Judiciary Committee in retribution. Rep. Anthony Brindisi also was overlooked for a plum committee appointment, but at least no one thinks his vote against Pelosi was personal.
Board of Regents Chairwoman Betty Rosa was shorted over $1 billion this week when Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that he would boost education funding by less than half of what Rosa said was necessary to properly fund schools – $2.1 billion. Sure, $1 billion may not sound like a small amount, but with a total budget of $175 billion, Rosa surely wishes the governor would’ve thrown an extra billion to schools.
The Queens assemblyman has been the go-to spokesman for outer-borough motorists who commute into Manhattan, but it’s looking increasingly likely that he won’t be able to stop congestion pricing this year. Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed budget now includes plans to charge drivers who enter Manhattan’s Central Business District – an idea that Weprin says will harm commuters from his district – and Cuomo is holding $7.3 billion in MTA funding hostage unless he gets his way.What’s more, a hefty legislative pay raise is contingent on the budget passing by April 1. It all gives new meaning to being railroaded.